Proposal: Politics

I am hesitant to commit to this SE since I can see no future for this other than:

  • A discussion board that is filled with LvR discussions.

  • Votes based on the position taken rather than the question or answer.

  • A forum to attack other SE users who disagree with their political opinions.

Is there any intent of implementing something more than the standard good subjective bad subjective criteria for this SE?

  • 2
    That would be tough. But we'd never know unless we try it? We could start with strict sourcing requirements and good moderation, and see how it goes.
    – StasM
    Commented Mar 20, 2012 at 21:44
  • @StasM - I think that is the way to go. I would be glad to be involved with that SE.
    – Chad
    Commented Mar 21, 2012 at 12:41
  • 3
    Christianity.SE has the exact same issue - but we've found answerable questions solicit substantive answers. We do delete the "What do you think about X?" (Because, frankly nobody cares what "you" think) questions pretty quick - but things that potentially could be answered garner really insightful answers that help people learn. Commented Mar 23, 2012 at 13:06

4 Answers 4


Fundamental problems that I see with a Q&A site for politics:

  • Answers in a Q&A site need to be verifiable by facts and legitimate sources, bottle fed talking points should be lower quality.

  • Quality of an answer needs to be based on its own merits, and not if it goes against somebodies heartfelt beliefs. With current SE tools, only the moderators would have the ability to enforce this well and even that is debatable.

  • The liklihood that shallow questions will occur is great. People will start using questions as a news feed from their favorite sources.

  • Astroturfing. Powerful interests will want control over the information that ends up on the site, as a Q&A site theoretically has more legitimacy than a comments section of a news feed.

Even if all of these issues are handled effectively as listed above, the information that others will find will probably be about as exciting as a wiki.

With all of that being said, I say give it a try. I am interested to see how it would turn out, more out of a morbid curiousity than anything else.


If you don't see a future for Politics SE, then I would respectfully suggest that you do not commit to it. Creating a successful Stack Exchange site is hard work; We need people who will activity fight the against the bullet points you raised above to guarantee its continued success.

Politics SE will not become a discussion board if we adhere to the same combination of philosophy, behaviors, and community self-moderation that drives any other Stack Exchange site. Not all subjects will necessarily make a viable Q&A site, and we are not going to radically alter or abandon the core philosophies of Stack Exchange to force a square peg into a round hole. If there is absolutely nothing to a future Politics SE site apart from the bullets you list above, it will not become part of the network.

I am not conceding that at all — it's just going to take a lot of hard work and a staunch belief in what we do to make some of these more subjective sites work.

  • 2
    I was thinking more some policy like skeptics SE of no original work.
    – Chad
    Commented Nov 4, 2011 at 15:36
  • Agreed, in the History SE we have plenty of answers and questions that are not appropriate or in certain answers there tend to be comment/flame wars. With the right level of moderation we've been slowly building up a good site with some nice contributors. Those who find themselves muted will soon leave the platform, and those who troll or enflame would just get frustrated and leave for more open platforms.
    – MichaelF
    Commented Jun 6, 2012 at 17:04

I'm very concerned people will just downvote answers even if they're well thought out, researched, and genuine answers just because they don't agree with that person's political philosophy!

(and of course the reverse will be true too)

psssstttt: I'm an anarchist! Please don't downvote this because of that! :-P ;-)

  • I would think an anarchist would not really care about the votes.
    – Chad
    Commented Jun 4, 2012 at 12:51
  • 4
    I'd suspect an Anarchist would want the downvotes to bring down the system.
    – MichaelF
    Commented Jun 6, 2012 at 17:02
  • sounds like Meta-SO to me
    – user71389
    Commented Dec 17, 2012 at 22:00

If answers are phrased to make it clear that the OP is writing an answer specific to a particular theory (conservative, liberal, anarchist, ect.), then people will probably be willing to grant it more slack

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